Does it matter which University you go to?

(24 Posts)
changeling1234 Fri 06-Sep-13 12:15:10

Because I'm very quite old, I still remember what I consider to be "proper" universities, and still find it difficult to recognise the old polytechnics as equal.

Do younger people have the same ideas? My DD wants to study radiography and is looking at several places. Do you think it matters if she studies at (for example) Portsmouth, Sheffield Hallam, Hertfordshire or if it's considered better to get your degree from Exeter, Leeds or Liverpool?

I've googled this quite a lot, but can't seem to get any definite answers. Any comments/advice/experience most welcome!

Lonecatwithkitten Fri 06-Sep-13 13:06:30

I would look at employment stats for radiographers if they are pretty much all employed to won't matter.

Is there some way she can find out about the quality of the degrees? Ds1 is about to start his second year of Law at Reading - and he chose Reading because its Law course has a very good reputation. Different courses at the same university will have different reputations within their subject, so she needs to look at which Radiography course is considered the best, from her list of prefered universities.

renaldo Fri 06-Sep-13 13:15:00

It doesn't matter as much for radiography. Look at where the placements are as most newly qualified end up working there initially. I'm a radiographer, personally I think Sheffield is the best local to me.

changeling1234 Fri 06-Sep-13 14:02:19

Renaldo, she has looked at Sheffield and really liked the town, although she did the tour of Sheffield Uni, rather than Hallam. Do you enjoy radiography? She's drawn to the diagnostic side, rather than therapeutic, but hasn't had chance to do any work experience as yet, which may well change her opinion. Did you do your degree at a university, or did you come into it via a different route? Sorry for all the questions but it's great to come across someone who's actually doing the job!

I did wonder if because it's a vocational type of course that it wouldn't matter as much which university she chooses. I'd just like to make sure that the course suits her and that university life is good.

I have friends who did their degrees at Sheffield, and who loved being there. In my experience, northern towns and cities are warm, friendly places - I did my nurse training in Manchester, and still look fondly on the city because of the way I was welcomed into people's homes (most of my colleagues lived fairly locally, whereas I had come from rural Shropshire, so was a long way from home - and my friends made me part of their families so I didn't feel so homesick).

mumblechum1 Fri 06-Sep-13 15:24:58

DS chose Liverpool John Moores (ex poly) rather than Uni of Manchester which also gave him an offer, specifically because it's easier to get to 4Para from Lpl than Manch (he's in the Army Reserve).

I did a lot of eyerolling about it but ultimately, as he's going in the Army they don't really care where you go as long as you get a 2:1.

renaldo Fri 06-Sep-13 15:36:49

Old route, diploma then masters now contemplating a phd. I it, I work flexibly, band 8 in nhs, pay relatively good.

BackforGood Fri 06-Sep-13 15:48:57

I think when it's voactional - such as radiography - it's less important which University you go to, than if you are doing a 'subject' such as maths or history. After all, all those courses used to be done at poly's and very fine degrees they were too - not pretending to be something they weren't.

eatyourveg Fri 06-Sep-13 15:59:32

Perhaps you could try asking the Society of Radiographers. Looking on their website it seems there are only 6 institutions they list as places where you can go onto do a postgrad qualification. I would look at those places first. See here

creamteas Fri 06-Sep-13 17:06:51

I would recommend looking at how many graduates where in work, and choose on this basis.

ISingSoprano Fri 06-Sep-13 17:08:45

Interesting thread thanks! My 15year old dd is thinking of Radiography and we have been trying to work out if there is much difference in the courses.

hellsbells99 Sat 07-Sep-13 08:47:35

Very interesting thread. My 16 yo looking at this too but struggling to get any work experience. Our local hospital has eventually agreed she can do 1 days shadowing when she is 17. Does anyone know of anywhere else that would accommodate her? Or any other work experience that would be considered relevant?

ISingSoprano Sat 07-Sep-13 09:33:44

hellsbells99 I think any health related work experience is good - it doesn't have to be specifically related to radiography. Consider too any volunteering at special schools, hospices, rehab units.

HRHLadyG Sat 07-Sep-13 09:38:21

Generally, the Russell Group Universities are considered to be the best and, certainly in Academic Circles, would be the ones to aim for.
She also needs to consider future employment possibilities as well as which Unit feels right for her. x

ISingSoprano Sat 07-Sep-13 09:58:16

I don't think the RG argument is particularly valid for a subject like Radiography.

BoffinMum Sat 07-Sep-13 10:04:07

People rate the Russell Group highly and the 1994 Group are considered good too.

MagratGarlik Sat 07-Sep-13 10:14:36

For practical subjects such as those training for allied health professions or teacher training, I think the post-92s can often be regarded slightly better, as they are seen as less 'academic' and more about equipping people to do the job they are training for. When getting work experience your DD should ask people in the department where they trained because there is often a bias towards hiring people from the same institution that the majority trained in themselves.

BlackMogul Mon 09-Sep-13 23:30:36

No-one has mentioned that some Universities are in cities and others are campus. This makes a big difference. You really cannot compare Exeter with Hertfordshire. It is not always wisest to choose based on course alone and some will be better than others. What grades do they want? how many people apply for how many places? this gives you an idea of what is best. I think prestige of Uni does matter, even more so now the fees are higher.

Kez100 Tue 10-Sep-13 07:01:00

I know someone at Exeter for radiography and has received a lot of NHS funding. That might make a difference - I don't know if its available where we you study or just at certain places.

exoticfruits Tue 10-Sep-13 07:09:29

You need to do the research for the best place for the subject- DS couldn't go to any of the 'old' universities because they didn't do it.
Look especially at graduate employment at the end.

Fairdene Tue 10-Sep-13 22:00:26

As a general principle yes, it matters enormously which university you go to and of course that's not purely in terms of employment.

2rebecca Germany Fri 13-Sep-13 13:01:01

Depends very much on subject. In Scotland for many engineering degreese Russell group is irrelevent as Strathclyde and heriot watt amongst the best. The amount of practical work you do in the engineering courses varies hugely. Cambridge is known for being a very academic maths heavy course although it is high in league tables. For nursing and medicine it doesn't much matter re Russell Group and choose more a location and course you fancy. beware of unis that have a high up placing on a league table just because they want high entrance grades but who have low student satisfaction and employment.
For language degrees Heriot Watt is popular with people who don't want to do lots of literature in their courses and do want to spend a year abroad. Russell group unis often have a more traditional approach to language learning with lots of literature.
For law I'd have thought Russell group was very important.
For radiography I'd have thought it was like medicine or nursing where you do your degree in a university and area you like and a radiography qualification is a radiography qualification.

hells I think Sheffield Hallam have something on their website about being able to do a day in a hospital there if you can't get any work experience where you live. Fortunately we are near a hospital which will take DD for a day's shadowing. She's also signed up with St John Ambulance to learn first aid. Not sure if it will help, but will certainly be a useful skill to have regardless.

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